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How can Google Ads and Google Search Help Small Business

Quick summary

For those who run a small business and brand, you'll want to make learning about how Google Ads work a priority when learning anything about digital marketing. COG Branding makes it our duty to ensure our clients understand the function of PPC Advertising and the basics of how Google works prior deploying advertising.

A short series from COG Branding on the digital marketing basics for Australian Small Business.

COG Branding is a Sydney marketing agency with a structure that ensures we are providing brand design, marketing, technology and business development solutions that are underpinned by true value. Our dynamic approach has been refined over the years by the demands of Australia’s small business community. This six part series is a summary on common digital marketing opportunities in our marketing landscape today.

  1. Google Advertising
  2. Facebook Advertising
  3. Instagram Advertising
  4. LinkedIn Advertising
  5. Email Marketing
  6. SEO (Search Engine Optimisation)

Article 1: Google Advertising

Ok, so some basics. Firstly, what is Google?

Google is a multinational technology company that specialises in Internet-related services and products. These include search engines, online advertising technologies, cloud computing, software, and hardware. Google was founded in 1998 by Larry Page and Sergey Brin while they were Ph.D. students at Stanford University in California. The company is headquartered in Mountain View, California, and has grown to become one of the most powerful and valuable companies in the world.

And, we all want to know how did Google start?

Google was started in 1996 by the two students; Larry Page and Sergey Brin. They were students that had been working on a research project called “Backrub” that examined the mathematical properties of the World Wide Web. They developed a new technology called PageRank, which used the number and quality of links pointing to a webpage to determine its importance and relevance.

In 1998, Page and Brin incorporated Google as a private company and began working on developing a search engine that used their new PageRank technology. They launched their first version of Google in September 1998, and it quickly gained popularity among users for its speed, accuracy, and relevance of results.

In the following years, Google continued to improve and refine its search technology and expanded its services to include other products such as Google AdWords and Google AdSense, which revolutionised online advertising.

Google went public in 2004, and since then, it has grown to become one of the most powerful and valuable companies in the world, with a wide range of products and services that touch almost every aspect of the internet. You can check the Alphabet (Google) share price here.

It’s complicated, though how does Google Search work?

Google Search works by using complex algorithms to crawl and index the billions of web pages on the internet, and then uses those indexes to match a user’s search query to the most relevant pages. So in simple terms, you key in some search words in the Google search window, the ones at the top are ads, and the ones under that are organic search results – but more on that later.

When a user enters a query, Google’s algorithm analyses the query and matches it to relevant pages in its index by using various ranking factors or signals, like the relevance and authority of the page, the quality of content, the number and quality of links pointing to the page, and many others.

Once the algorithm has determined the most relevant pages, it ranks them according to relevance and displays the results to the user in the form of a search engine results page (SERP).

Google also uses machine learning models to make search results even more relevant. Like BERT, which helps Google understand the intent behind a user’s query, or RankBrain which helps Google to understand the query better.

Google Search also uses personalisation to show more relevant results to users based on their search history, location, and other factors. Google location services are relatively simple to understand, if your search query is related to business in your local area, Google will provide these if their SEO and website is up to scratch. For instance if you search digital marketing agency Cronulla, you’ll see COG Digital is ranking number one in organic, and COG Branding is in the 3 Pack SEO results under Google My Business.

For those who run a small business and brand, you’ll want to make learning about how Google Ads work a priority when learning anything about digital marketing.

Google Ads (formerly known as Google AdWords) is an online advertising platform developed by Google, where businesses and individuals can create and display ads to reach potential customers. The ads can appear on Google search results pages, on other websites that are part of the Google Network, and on YouTube.

Google Ads uses a pay-per-click (PPC) model, which means that the advertiser only pays when a user clicks on their ad. The advertiser sets a budget for their campaign and bids on specific keywords that they want their ad to appear for when a user searches for those keywords on Google.

When a user conducts a search on Google, Google’s algorithm analyses the search query and matches it to the most relevant ads in its database. The ads are then ranked according to their relevance and the amount of the bid and are displayed on the search engine results page (SERP)

Google Ads also allows targeting specific demographics, locations, interests, and behaviours, which allows to reach specific audiences. Google Advertising also provides a variety of ad formats such as text, display, video, and shopping ads, that can be used to reach potential customers in different ways and on different platforms.

Overall, as a leading Sydney digital marketing agency, COG Branding believes Google Ads should be a central pillar of any small businesses marketing strategy as the service provides a way for businesses of all sizes to reach potential customers in a targeted, measurable, and cost-effective way.

COG-branding-Ocean-and-Earth-Google-Ads_1

Click through to read a Google Ads case study about how COG Branding achieved a ROAS of 400% for the Australian surf brand Ocean & Earth.

Now pay attention, you’ll want to understand what different types of Google Ads are there as it can get costly.

Advertising on Google Ads is great as the service offers several different types of ad formats that small businesses and individuals can use to reach potential customers. COG Branding are a full service Sydney branding agency and our services graphic design for Google Display Ad Campaigns, and also Google Campaign Strategy. So when looking to partner with a Google Ads Agency consider what other services you might need to ensure align with a value supplier to get most bang for your buck.

Google Ads include a few different options, of the most popular types include:

  1. Search Ads: These are the text-based ads that appear at the top and bottom of the search engine results page (SERP) when a user conducts a search on Google. They are triggered by specific keywords that the advertiser bids on.
  2. Display Ads: These are ads that appear on other websites that are part of the Google Display Network. They can be in the form of text, images, or videos and can be targeted to specific demographics, locations, interests, and behaviours.
  3. Video Ads: These ads appear on YouTube and Google’s video partner websites. They can be in the form of pre-roll, mid-roll, or post-roll videos, and can be targeted to specific demographics, locations, interests, and behaviours.
  4. Shopping Ads: These are product-based ads that appear on the SERP when a user conducts a search for a specific product. They include an image of the product, the price, and the name of the business.
  5. App Ads: These are ads that promote mobile apps and appear on the SERP, Google Play, and other mobile app stores.
  6. Local Ads: These are ads that promote businesses with a physical location and appear on Google Maps and the Local Finder feature on the SERP.
  7. Dynamic Search Ads: These are ads that use your website’s content to dynamically generate ad headlines and landing pages.
  8. Gmail Ads: These are ads that appear in the Promotions tab of a user’s Gmail inbox.

Each ad format has its own unique features and targeting options, and businesses can choose the format that best fits your advertising goals and budget. Without proper guidance here you can easily squander opportunity and spend a ton of money with no real business growth.

Most importantly, are Google Ads Expensive?

The cost of Google Ads can vary greatly depending on several factors such as the industry, competition, the keywords being targeted, the location, and the ad format.

As mentioned earlier in this article the Google PPC model means the advertiser pays when a user clicks on their search text advertisement, or the graphic display advertisement. The advertiser sets a budget for their campaign and bids on specific keywords that they want their ad to appear for when a user searches for those keywords on Google. The highest bidder gets the top spot on the search engine results page (SERP).

Some industries and keywords have a higher cost-per-click (CPC) than others, and the more competitive the industry and keywords, the more expensive the CPC will be. For example, keywords in legal, superannuation, used cars and emergency plumbing for instance tend to have higher CPCs than keywords in the clothing or home decor field.

Advertisers also have the option to set a daily budget for their campaigns, which helps to control costs. With a daily budget, the advertiser can set a maximum amount that they are willing to spend per day and Google will automatically adjust the bids on keywords to stay within that budget. This function is what we call ‘pacing’ and you need to perform this regularly to ensure your spend doesn’t run away on you.

Overall, Google Ads can be expensive and easily have a budget blowout if you are not skilled at managing the dashboard and your ad campaigns, but it can also be an effective way to reach potential customers, especially when targeting is done correctly and the campaigns are well-optimised. COG Branding also focus on deploying search text brand ads for our small business clients as we believe brand marketing is key, and integral to a sustainable small business digital strategy for any brand.

Plus, search text brand ads are a relatively low cost per click that acts asa brand defence strategy protecting you against competitors that may wish to use your companies keywords in their ads, so that their search results are displayed as a search text ad, above your organic ranking.

It’s important to remember that the cost of the ads should be balanced with the potential return on investment. As a leading Sydney digital marketing agency, we pride ourselves on explaining what sort of results should be expected from a certain budget and a particular industry prior onboarding a new client.

Transparency is key and the digital marketing industry is filled with suppliers who are not so forthcoming with a realistic summary of how Google Ads will support their business. You can read more about this below.

A common question we get as a leading Sydney Digital Marketing agency is are Google Ads easy to do yourself or do you need a professional digital marketing agency like COG Branding?

Google Ads can be relatively easy to set up and manage, but to get the most out of your campaigns and generate a positive return on investment, it is recommended to seek the help of a professional digital marketing agency.

Setting up a Google Ads account and creating a campaign is relatively simple and can be done by following the step-by-step instructions provided by Google. However, creating effective and profitable campaigns requires a deep understanding of the platform, the target audience, the industry, and the competition. A professional agency will have the experience, knowledge and resources to create campaigns that are tailored to your specific business goals and target audience.

Additionally, a professional agency like COG Branding will have the tools and experience to monitor and optimise campaigns on an ongoing basis. They will be able to track the performance of your campaigns, identify areas that need improvement, and make adjustments to improve the ROI. They will also be able to make use of advanced targeting options and audience insights that can help to increase the effectiveness of the campaigns.

In summary, Google Ads is relatively easy to set up and manage, but to get the most out of your campaigns, it is recommended to seek the help of a professional digital marketing agency.

It’s a no brainer, though you want know if Google Ads suitable for a small business?

Google Ads can be a suitable option for small businesses, as it allows them to reach potential customers in a targeted, measurable, and cost-effective way. Though we believe how a small business create great marketing to win new business may start with a strategic Google Ads program, it’s only half of the strategy.

Google Ads allows small businesses to set a budget that fits their needs and goals, and also allows them to target specific demographics, locations, interests, and behaviours, which can help to reach the right audience.

Additionally, Google Ads provides a variety of ad formats such as text, display, video, and shopping ads, that can be used to reach potential customers in different ways and on different platforms. This can help small businesses to create campaigns that are tailored to their specific business goals and target audience.

However, while Google Ads can be a cost-effective way to reach potential customers, it can also be a very competitive and crowded space. Small businesses will have to compete with larger businesses, who might have more resources to invest in their campaigns. Additionally, small businesses might not have the same level of expertise and knowledge about the platform and the industry, which can lead to less effective campaigns.

Overall, Google Ads can be a suitable option for small businesses, but it is important to approach it with a clear strategy, a well-defined target audience, and a budget that fits their needs. It might also be helpful to seek the help of a professional digital marketing agency who can help small businesses to create and manage effective campaigns that generate a positive return on investment.

Again, pay attention here as we often get asked can Google Ads be used for any type of small business?

Google Ads can be used by any type of small business, but its effectiveness will depend on the type of business, the target audience, and the products or services being offered.

Google Ads allows small businesses to target specific demographics, locations, interests, and behaviours, which can help to reach the right audience. This means that any small business that has a defined target audience and a clear value proposition can benefit from Google Ads.

For example, a small retail store can use Google Ads to promote their products and drive foot traffic to their store, while a small service-based business can use Google Ads to promote their services and generate leads. A small e-commerce business can use Google Ads to generate more sales and increase brand awareness.

As a leading Sydney marketing company we have created hundreds of digital strategy programs for businesses that have both online retail and traditional brick-and-mortar retail like Between The Flags, you can read a case study here.

COG-Case-Study-Between-the-Flags_Google-Ads_1

 

However, some industries might be more competitive and more expensive than others, and small businesses in those industries might find that Google Ads is not as cost-effective as other marketing channels. Additionally, some small businesses might not have a strong online presence, which might make it more difficult to reach their target audience via Google Ads.

In summary, Google Ads can be used by any type of small business, but its effectiveness will depend on the type of business, the target audience, and the products or services being offered. It’s important for small businesses to approach Google Ads with a clear strategy, a well-defined target audience, and a budget that fits their needs. A professional digital marketing agency can help small businesses to create and manage effective campaigns that generate a positive return on investment.

Our best advice is yes, though do you need a website for Google Ads?

No, a website is not required for Google Ads. You can create an ad campaign and direct it to a landing page or a specific webpage. However, having a website can be beneficial for your ad campaign as it can provide more information about your business and can also help with conversion tracking.

As a leading Sydney website development agency we often get asked what type of small business websites work well with Google Ads?

COG Branding employee experienced and website developers for a couple of key website products. As a proven Sydney website agency we specialise in developing websites that are most appropriate for small business and brands. There are many different types of websites that can work well with Google Ads, though we like to focus on primarily WordPress Websites, Shopify Websites, Magento Websites and Big Commerce websites. We focus on these four main websites as they have a few characteristics that are most valuable to small business:

  • Open Source Websites: WordPress and Magento. These have an accessible code base and allow our website developers to perform a more broad range of tasks that is often more efficient in time thus often a more effective solution for small business.
  • Proprietary Websites: Shopify and Big Commerce are both cloud hosted closed source website products and while the are a little more automate din the CMS and the hosting is taken care of, the fees in US dollars and the proprietary model restricts some flexibility in development solutions and ensure plugins for instance need to be from within that same community.
  • E-commerce websites, where people can purchase products or services directly from the website
  • Lead generation websites, where people can fill out a form or request more information about a product or service
  • Content-based websites, where people can read articles, watch videos, or learn about a particular subject
  • Service-based websites, where people can schedule appointments, make reservations, or learn more about a service offered

In general, websites that are well-designed and easy to navigate, with clear calls-to-action, tend to work well with Google Ads. Additionally, having a good amount of relevant, high-quality content can also help improve the performance of your ad campaigns. COG Branding offer a wide range of website design solutions which you can read more about here.

Data is key, so what is the best analytics program to measure the results of your Google Ads?

Google Analytics is considered one of the best analytics programs for measuring the results of your Google Ads campaigns. Google Analytics is a free web analytics service offered by Google that tracks and reports website traffic. It can be integrated with your Google Ads account, allowing you to track important metrics such as website visitors, conversion rates, revenue, and more.

With Google Analytics, you can set up goals and track conversions, which is particularly useful for e-commerce websites and lead generation websites. Additionally, you can also use Google Analytics to track the performance of your ad campaigns by linking them to your Google Ads account. This will give you insights into how many people are clicking on your ads, how many are visiting your website, and how many are converting into customers.

Another great analytics program to consider is Google Tag Manager, it helps you manage and deploy marketing and analytics tags all in one place, without needing to modify the code of your website. While these are all Google products, business intelligence (BI) is often a more comprehensive category to investigate if you are more interested in deep data sets and more complex analytics requirements.

It’s also worth noting that you can use Google Ads built-in reporting system, it’s a simple and easy way to track your ad’s performance, it will give you a comprehensive view of your campaigns, ad groups, and keywords.

You need to know what sort of results does Google provide a small business?

Google Ads can provide a number of benefits for small businesses, including:

  1. Increased Visibility: By running ads on Google, small businesses can increase their visibility online and reach a larger audience. Advertisers can target specific demographics, geographic locations, and even specific interests, which allows them to reach their ideal customers.
  2. Cost-effective: Google Ads allows small businesses to set a budget for their ad campaigns, which can help them stay within their marketing budget. Additionally, Google Ads operates on a pay-per-click model, which means businesses only pay when someone clicks on their ad.
  3. Measurable Results: Google Ads provides businesses with detailed reporting and analytics, which allows them to track the performance of their ad campaigns and see how they are impacting their business. This can help businesses optimise their campaigns and make data-driven decisions.
  4. Local targeting: Google Ads has many tools like Google My Business, Google Maps, and Local Inventory Ads, which helps small businesses target their local customers, making it easy for them to find you and visit your store.
  5. Branding: Google Ads allows small businesses to promote their brand, their products and services, which can help them build trust and credibility with their customers.

Overall, Google Ads can be a valuable tool for small businesses looking to increase their online presence, reach new customers, and drive sales.

This is our job for you, and we need you to also know what makes Google Search rank a website over another?

Google uses a complex algorithm to determine the relevance and importance of a website and rank it in its search results. The algorithm takes into account hundreds of ranking factors or signals, which are designed to help Google understand the relevance and authority of a website. Some of the most important ranking factors include:

  1. Relevance: Google wants to ensure that the search results it shows are relevant to the user’s query. To determine relevance, Google looks at factors such as the keywords used on the website, the overall content of the website, and the relevance of the website’s inbound and outbound links.
  2. Quality: Google wants to ensure that the search results it shows are of high quality. To determine quality, Google looks at factors such as the website’s design, user experience, and content. Google also uses machine learning algorithms to evaluate the overall quality of a website.
  3. Content: Google values fresh, original, and high-quality content. Google’s algorithm is built to understand the intent of the user’s query and deliver the most relevant and useful information possible.
  4. Authority: Google wants to ensure that the search results it shows are from authoritative and trustworthy sources. To determine authority, Google looks at factors such as the number and quality of inbound links pointing to the website, the age of the domain, and the overall popularity of the website.
  5. User signals: Google takes into account the behaviour of users on a website, such as the number of clicks, the time spent on the website, the bounce rate, and the number of pages viewed.
  6. Technical SEO: Google uses crawlers to scan a website, its URLs, images, videos, and so on, it checks for a number of on-page technical SEO factors such as meta tags, mobile responsiveness, and website structure.

It’s worth mentioning that Google’s algorithm is always changing, and there is no one definitive list of ranking factors. Google regularly updates its algorithm to improve the quality of its search results and adapt to new technologies and user behaviour.

A few reasons why you should have a SEO and Google Ad Strategy working together?

Yes, it is recommended to have a SEO and Google Ads strategy working together for a more comprehensive approach to digital marketing.

SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) focuses on making your website more visible in organic search results, while Google Ads focuses on paid advertising. Together, they can help increase your visibility and drive more traffic to your website.

SEO can help to improve the visibility of your website in organic search results, and can help to increase the number of people visiting your website over time. It can also help to establish your website as an authority in your industry.

Google Ads can help to drive more immediate traffic to your website, and can help to increase the number of conversions and sales. It can also help to increase brand awareness and reach a wider audience.

When these two strategies are used together, they can help to increase your visibility in both organic and paid search results, which can ultimately lead to more traffic, more conversions and more sales. Additionally, the data from both platforms can be used to inform each other, for example, the data from Google Ads can help to identify which keywords and ads are performing well, which can then be used to optimise your SEO strategy.

In summary, both SEO and Google Ads can be powerful tools for driving traffic and increasing conversions, but they are most effective when used together as part of a comprehensive digital marketing strategy.

If you want to go it alone, or at least get involved, you’ll want to know where you can teach yourself Google Ads?

There are several resources available for learning Google Ads on your own:

  1. Google Ads Learning Center (Skillshop): Google provides a wealth of free resources through the Google Ads Learning Center. It offers a wide range of tutorials, guides, and best practices for creating, running, and optimising Google Ads campaigns.
  2. Google Ads Help Center: The Google Ads Help Center is another great resource for learning about Google Ads. It provides answers to common questions, troubleshooting guides, and product documentation.
  3. YouTube: There are many tutorial videos available on YouTube that can help you learn how to use Google Ads. You can find videos that cover a wide range of topics, such as how to set up a campaign, how to target your ads, and how to track your results.
  4. Online Courses: There are several online platforms such as Udemy, Coursera, and LinkedIn Learning that offer courses on Google Ads, some of them are free and some are paid. These courses can provide a more structured and comprehensive learning experience, and can help you learn at your own pace.
  5. Blogs and forums: There are many blogs and forums dedicated to Google Ads, where you can find tips, tricks, and best practices from experts in the field. Some examples include Search Engine Land, Google Ads Community, and Digital Marketing Institute.

It’s worth noting that Google offers certifications for individuals and agencies, Google Ads Fundamentals, and Google Ads Search, Shopping, Video, and Display certifications. Passing the certification exams can help demonstrate your knowledge and skills of Google Ads. With any questions you can call COG Branding anytime on (02) 9523 6007 and request further information on how Google Ads can assist your small business.

Where can I learn more about Google Products?

You can learn more about Google Products by visiting the Google website (https://www.google.com/) and clicking on the “Products” link in the top navigation menu. This will take you to a page with a list of all of Google’s products, including search, Gmail, YouTube, Google Drive, Google Maps, and many more. Each product has its own page with information and resources on how to use it. Additionally, the Google Support website (https://support.google.com/) offers help and tutorials for using many of Google’s products.

Should you build Google Ads yourself or go to a digital marketing agency like COG Branding?

COG Branding Agency provides first class Pay Per Click marketing services and our work has earned us paid perfomance marketing partner certification. Through performance search networks and affiliates we introduce businesses and their brand to their target audience, so we make sure to align our clients with the most appropriate digital marketing strategy.

If you use a digital marketing company like COG Branding, it will depend on your specific needs and resources. Building your own Google Ads campaign requires a significant investment of time and effort to learn the platform and create effective ads. A digital marketing agency, on the other hand, has the experience and expertise to create and manage a campaign for you, but it can be more expensive.

Ultimately, the decision should be based on your budget, the resources you have available, and the level of control you want to have over the campaign.

The leading Sydney digital marketing agency providing Google Ads Services.

COG Branding are Google Partner and Google certified Google Ads specialists. Our digital marketing team are experts at managing the complex suite of digital marketing products and softwares. We have the skills and experience to integrate intelligent business solutions that link your customers to your branded digital touch points and assets.

Providers of strategic Lead Generation solutions via PPC Campaigns on platforms such as Google Ads, Meta (Facebook & Instagram), LinkedIn, Twitter and Outbrain. We create ad copy, design content, deploy campaigns and analyse data. Reach out anytime on (02) 9523 6007 or contact us here https://cogbranding.com.au/contact/

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Luke Sullivan

Luke Sullivan is a brand marketing expert that specialises in a small business. Active as the COG Branding Managing, you can reach Luke Sullivan on his LinkedIn profile.

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